While two weeks of proper riding time would not have been enough to compete properly in the MX1 class, it did set me up for a decent effort in the Vets at Summercross this year. Some drama added to the entertainment.
You have probably heard of the King brothers. Damien is the youngest of them, and he has managed to keep me from winning both a Supercross title and the MX1 Championship over the years. Damien and I get on really well together, but you could rightly guess that there would be some friendly rivalry between us when vying for the number one spot again, even when its the Vet class honours.
Well I had good speed, taking out the qualifying. This gave me first pick of the gates, but I was late to line up and arrived to find almost everybody else already parked behind the gates. I still managed to find a good enough gate to take the holeshot and the win in the first race, but that little mistake would play a part in the drama of the second race.
Ready or Not
Being the first race in the program, we normally got the slippery conditions of a watered track. This was going to be even worse after the lunch break, except it wasn’t to be. The starter must have assumed I was just late for the second race as well, but I was just banking on there being a lunch break as announced by Neil Ritchie. Arriving at what I thought was a very early time, he had already let everyone onto the gates and proceeded to signal for the 10 second board. Now I didn’t even have my helmet on yet, but nevertheless they dropped the gates anyway.
I hurredly strapped my helmet and goggles on, leaving my gloves behind. It was a fairly crazy first lap as I charged through the pack, but I was already up to third place. By the end of lap two I had Damien in my sights, but the red flag came out. It turns out that Darryl King and other vets had arrived even later than me because of what was meant to be a lunch break. The organisers realized their mistake in starting the race and sent us back for another try. After the restart I won that race as well, but the drama was not over yet.
Damien got the holeshot in race three and was determined to not let me get past. It was a little like old times and I actually bumped him a little when I did eventually get past. All was well with the white flag coming out, except that it stayed out for the next lap as well. I thought that was quite funny. The riding had been so enjoyable however that I just went with it and rode the extra lap, feeling like I had been given good value for money with three laps more than I was meant to get.
With Cody winning the MX1 class it was a good day for Honda. The club did a great job and with Damien in second place and my mate Larry getting third, I was in good company. Here’s to many more fun days of racing in the Vets class.